New premium features: Dropbox syncing and lists

We’re excited to reveal two brand new features for our premium subscribers: Dropbox syncing, and support for lists.

Dropbox syncing

Synchronization is a wonderful thing. Your computers sync information with your devices, your apps sync information with other apps, and everybody wins.

We’re all about syncing here at Simperium. It’s our pleasure to announce seamless integration with Dropbox, another great syncing service (and, incidentally, a fellow Y Combinator startup company).

Dropbox is a great way to sync files. When you link your Dropbox account to your Simplenote account, all your notes in Simplenote will appear as text files in the Dropbox directory of your choice. Thereafter, your notes and files stay synchronized as you make changes. Syncing happens in both directions.

Best of all, you just need to set this up once, and it works automatically everywhere you use Simplenote: iOS, the web app, and all 3rd-party apps.

Syncing with Dropbox currently happens every several minutes. We’ll improve this approach as new syncing features become available in both Dropbox and Simplenote.

To configure Dropbox syncing, premium users can access their account settings in the web app.


Lots of people use Simplenote to keep lists. Using an iPhone or iPad, premium subscribers can now turn any note into a reorderable list of items. Go to the Note Info screen and toggle the View as List switch. You can easily edit items, rearrange them, and cross them off by swiping them.

Lists are stored as plaintext, so they also work with the Simplenote web app and all 3rd-party apps.


We hope you agree that Simplenote is a valuable service. Starting today, the price of premium subscriptions will be $1.99 per month, or $19.99 per year.

Your support helps us to keep making improvements to Simplenote. Here’s a table that summarizes the differences between premium and free accounts. If you’re ready to upgrade, sign in to the web app and access your account settings.

29 thoughts on “New premium features: Dropbox syncing and lists

  1. Hi,The upgrade sounds really good.I'm a bit confused about my account type. When I log into my settings on the website, it's listed as "Ad-Free" and I'm not offered any renew options. On the iPad app, logged into the same account, the Type is listed as "Premium", and the Upgrades area tells me that the account is "Premium Enabled" and is set to expire Feb 18th, 2011. It gives me an Add 12 Months" option, costing 2,300 yen.I'm a bit confused about the discrepancy.

  2. Thanks! I was considering letting my premium lapse and then you went and brought me lists and the ability to use my preferred text editor when on the Mac instead of a syncing app. Thank you so much for this app, it has been great for years and yet always gets better.

  3. Great update, but, in my opinion, you should have warned your loyal subscribers about the price increase a few days in advance.

  4. Thanks for the clarification. Can you tell me a bit about password security when syncing with Dropbox? Does it use OAuth or is the password stored on Simplenote's servers?

  5. Is the lists functionality going to be incorporated into the web version as well? I love that functionality for managing to do list items and projects. If so, I hope to be able to sunset my ToodleDo account for good…in favor of this cleaner, simpler, more elegant solution.

  6. I have the same question as Rick (third comment) I also have this ad-free account. Could you please clarify?

  7. @rick and @roy: We've temporarily upgraded ad-free accounts to premium as a result of a problem where you would have to see ads otherwise. Your account will revert to its previous, ad-free state after the next update when this is fixed. Sorry for the confusion.@citizentoni: We notified all existing premium users whose accounts were close to expiring about the impending price change.@andy: We're going to see how people use the lists feature first, and then improve it based on feedback.

  8. @simplenoteSeeing your reply to @andy it seems as if you´re excluding all users on different plattforms and the web. Me personally I use simplenote on a daily basis on webOS-Phone and on the web. I´d love to see lists enabled for the web-application.Thx. t.

  9. GREAT job on the lists. I love that I can just type lists with line breaks and then turn them into a list. This works amazingly well for our grocery lists, etc.. LOVE IT.I read your reply to the "ad-free", but I'm not sure I understand the future of my account type. I bought the app right when it first came out and paid the full price before it was free. So I guess I have the "ad-free" because of that. But just to be clear, you are saying that I need to subscribe to the premium service after the next update on order to get the premium features? I understand that as an early adopter pricing needs to change etc… and I appreciate the ad-free version.

  10. Is there a way to see the lists feature in action? Some screenshots, or a single sample note that can be viewed in list format for free users?Can I create a note that I will use as a list template, ie: "travel packing list", then copy that list template to a new note, ie: "trip to LA". Can I check off finished items? What character would the check mark look like in a text editor on Notational Velocity?I'm very excited about the potential in this feature, but I'd like to see how it works first.

  11. Just a quick followup to my previous comment. The app 'NoteTask' uses a leading '-' to indicate a task item and a leading '!' to indicate a completed item. I'd humbly request (for my purposes) a third state 'x' for a canceled or not applicable item.Of course I could just TYPE a leading '-', '!', or 'x' myself in the SimpleNote editor, but positioning at the beginning of a line isn't quick or easy, nor is entering those three characters. A one tap/swipe 'toggle item state' would be better.

  12. I'll tell you what I know about the lists which is just from my use but I don;t have any screenshots on hand. When you enable list mode on the note separates each item and gives you the little "reorder" symbol on the right to hold down and reorder. You swipe left to right to mark it as done. When it is marked as done, it goes to a lighter grey, puts an X at the beginning and adds a strikethrough. the UI is pretty nice for first launch and works well… you can rally see at a glance what is left to do.Viewing the "list" in the web app or something like NV shows that it uses a similar notation to what you describe. As best as I can see it adds a "- X" to each item marked as done. as far as templates I guess you could create one as any other note and copy it. It seems to still run off of regular raw text.that's my thoughts on it. Like I said.. I really love it. No other to-do list allowed an import to create a todo and this works great becuase it's just text. I can copy in things from email or a website and make a list out of them with the touch of a button.

  13. @Ryan, how do I copy a note in the iPhone app?> as far as templates I guess you could create one as any other note and copy it. It seems to still run off of regular raw text.

  14. Wow awesome! You almost got me sold. One question though:I'm using third party clients to access my simplenote account from my desktop PC (ResophNotes). Will using both, DropBox AND ResophNotes jeopardize or damage my notes in any way?

  15. This is one awesome app and I love it. A couple of comments:1. I encountered some weird typing problems when typing directly into the site (I used Chrome running on Win7 Pro). After the save some sentences got mangled. Not critical but mildly annoying.2. I don't understand the $20/year price justification. Zenbe offers synchronized lists for $5 (pay once, not once a year). The dropbox synchronization is nice but $20/year for this? I would be happy to pay something but a recurring charge for an app is not a model I want to encourage as a consumer. Make it a one time payment and I'll be happy to support you.

  16. I have to say I was very excited to come across this app. I use Evernote a lot and while it is wonderful sometimes the complexity is too much for my needs.But 1.99 a month for your app is just asking far too much when I can get what I do from evernote for a lot less (in real terms).I think you need to rethink this subscription model. 5.99 max as a one off and you might have a sale.

  17. I wouldn't go as far as G: I think it's a clear advantage for a developer to have a recurring income. But for users, yeah, there are so many services that we want to use and committing to ongoing payments is a bit of a hard sell.

  18. Dropbox synchronisation is a lovely feature, but it is unacceptable to have to give you full read/write access to the entire Dropbox. Are you working with Dropbox to implement a more rational access policy?

  19. @tklr: We'll be improving the web app over time as well.@Ryan: Thanks, happy you like lists. Your original account type is ad-free, but doesn't include premium features.@PT: Looks like Ryan answered most of your questions accurately.@Oliver: If you use a 3rd-party app that can put files in a Dropbox directory, you should configure Simplenote to use a different directory.@G, Marky, Rick: We understand that the premium upgrade won't be worth it for everyone, and we know some people don't like subscriptions. They're welcome to keep using the free version. We'll be working to improve both free accounts and premium accounts over time, including adding ways to help free users see why a premium account might be worth it.@Danyai: You raise a valid point, but this is the way it has to work for now. In the meantime, Dropbox does their best to ensure they only work with trustworthy developers:

  20. Hi! Simplenote used to have an ad-free in-app purchase, but now when I go to the settings, only the Premium in-app purchase is available. What happened?

  21. @george: We've removed that option because it wasn't popular, it wasn't terribly clear, and it wasn't worth it from our perspective. If you have a strong opinion about it, we'd enjoy reading more:

  22. Does the list feature pretty much replace the use for TaskPaper?Since the developer of TP hasn't been able to achieve Dropbox support in months, I would then consider switching to SimpleNote. 🙂

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